Fit Vijay Shankar is raring to go again, makes TNPL debut
Tirunelveli, August 9: It was a mixed day for Vijay Shankar playing his first cricket match in 43 days after being sidelined with a toe injury during the ICC World Cup in England in June. The India all-rounder, who made his debut in the Sankar Cement Tamil Nadu Premier League on Friday for Chepauk Super Gillies, was content about his fitness levels and is raring to go once again.
“I’m feeling a lot better now, just getting back to cricketing activities and really excited to be part of this TNPL after three years and feeling really happy about that,” he said.
Vijay’s last international match was against West Indies on July 27 as three days later he injured his toe while training ahead of India’s game against England.
The TNPL became a soothing balm for the recuperating Vijay as he was with the CSG team right from the start of the tournament attending every training session and matches they played. He believes it helped him in his recovery and it was a new “learning” as well.
“I wanted to be with the team because I felt that it is a great opportunity for me to sit and watch the game from the outside. Sometimes by watching you learn a lot. I was with the team for most of the games and that’s how I did training and all those things which was important for me to get back into cricket,” he said.
Vijay’s TNPL debut was on similar lines with his World Cup debut. On both occasions, he claimed a wicket of his first ball. At Old Trafford, he trapped Pakistan opener Imam-ul Haq leg before wicket with his first ball and here on Friday, opening the attack for CSG dismissed Tuti Patriots’ opener Akash Sivan with the first ball.
Bowling gave him greater joy in his first TNPL match as he took two wickets for 15 runs in four overs but things didn't go well while batting as he was out after scoring only three runs. “A bit disappointed that I didn’t do well with the bat. Bowling came out very well and I’d be happy to contribute with the ball for my team. I’d love to contribute with my bat as well and take my team to victory and very happy with the way how the team is progressing,” he said.
Vijay was also happy that his TNPL debut came at his hometown of Tirunelveli, although his approach for the game was like any other match. “I’m happy to make my debut here. As a cricketer, my game will be the same no matter where I play. I play with the same intensity as a cricketer,” he said.
In a low scoring game, CSG downed TP by 32 runs to make it to the second spot in the TNPL standings for the season. They will take on league toppers Dindigul Dragons in Qualifier 1 here on Sunday.